The Drexel Co-op experience is a renowned collegiate program and the essence of the Drexel Difference in the Westphal College of Media Arts & Design. Design & Merchandising students spend a minimum of six months (two terms) working in positions during which they apply classroom and studio skills to an actual work experience within their chosen professions. Design & Merchandising students leave for co-op academically equipped to be part of a company, and return as young business professionals having integrated classroom knowledge into the workplace and improved their resume.
International Co-op Stories
Becca, D&M senior, completed her co-op abroad with the Bioko Biodiversity Protection Program (BBPP). She spent five weeks in Africa doing marketing, graphic/web design, sales planning for their sustainable jewelry line, and field research for BBPP. Her focus was to learn about the environment and how to create sustainable design across industries. She worked on a team of about 20 people and engaged with village locals learning of their culture and history!
When asked about the most rewarding part of her co-op, Becca said, "Surprisingly, the most rewarding part of my experience wasn’t the work. It was the personal lessons I learned and the growth I experienced during my time in Equatorial Guinea. My perspective was challenged in incredible ways by a different approach to work with less resources, a brand-new culture, and people who showed me what stepping out of my comfort zone could lead to."
Jess, D&M senior, completed two co-ops during her time in Melbourne, Australia. One of her experiences was with leather handbag company X NIHILO, where she was in charge of their public relations. Since it was a small team, she had her hands in almost every aspect of the company including marketing, retail sales planning, and website and social media management. The most rewarding part of her experience was learning the cultural difference between the USA and Australia, especially as it related to business practices.
Jess' biggest piece of advice for someone considering an international co-op would be "that it won't be a regret if you do because you will not only learn more about what you do with your work life, but it will teach you much more outside of that. Getting an understanding for how different cultures do business is very important in developing your own style of work. It is 10 times more difficult than doing a standard co-op in the states because of airfare, housing, setting up a bank account, getting a SIM card, etc. It is obviously worth it, but my advice is be prepared for more than a simple co-op."
Where Design & Merchandising Majors Completed Co-ops
Don’t know what to wear on your first day? We can help! Click here.